Author Topic: Vellum: the official thread  (Read 118375 times)  

Offline D-C

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #75 on: June 05, 2015, 06:44:52 AM »
Hi folks,

Has anyone had experience with formatting a boxset in Vellum? I'm about to format a x5 novel boxset and wondered if anyone had any tips?

Offline Brad West

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #76 on: June 05, 2015, 04:28:22 PM »
Hi folks,

Has anyone had experience with formatting a boxset in Vellum? I'm about to format a x5 novel boxset and wondered if anyone had any tips?

We let D-to-the-C know that we're working on improvements for this right now, and sent some suggestions to use in the meantime. If anyone else has a similar question, email us and we'll be happy to send those suggestions along.

Brad West. Co-founder of 180g, Creators of Vellum

Offline szaxe

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #77 on: June 09, 2015, 02:51:07 AM »
Hi, very interested in Vellum, just have a few questions if you don't mind  :)

I noted further back that you said you use SVG? Does Amazon support SVG?

If you do use SVG is it possible to add images in SVG?

If not could you advise the best resolution and size for black and white images? They are very basic graph like.

The thing is I can save them as anything from Serif Drawplus. I can tell you that the images will be full page width, so I imagine only the width is an issue as the images are all different fractions of a page length ... I am assuming if I get the page width right the software will scale correctly the different heights?

At the moment I just save my images as an SVG file, at 300DPI (Is that high enough?) from images that span the full width of a Serif Drawplus  A4 page. I then paste into LibreOffice and then export from LibreOffice into a PDF ... I get excellent results.

Just a ballpark opinion for a page width and format (PNG etc), for a good crisp image across the different platforms Vellum supports, would be of great help to me  :)

Regards Szaxe.

Ps. I would rather pay Amazon a little extra for file size than have a poor image  ;)
« Last Edit: June 09, 2015, 03:10:17 AM by szaxe »

Offline Brad West

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #78 on: June 09, 2015, 10:42:02 AM »
Hi, very interested in Vellum, just have a few questions if you don't mind  :)

I noted further back that you said you use SVG? Does Amazon support SVG?

If you do use SVG is it possible to add images in SVG?

If not could you advise the best resolution and size for black and white images? They are very basic graph like.

Hi Szaxe,

Vellum does use SVG images for ornaments in headings and scene breaks, and these can be displayed by any Kindle that supports Amazon's modern "KF8" format. That's pretty much anything but very-old Kindles and the Look Inside feature, which use the older "mobi7" format. (We have some comparison images and more details in our help page describing Kindle Formats.) On these older devices, the ornaments won't be displayed, but because they are just ornaments, a reader using one of these Kindles doesn't really miss out on any of the content of your book.

SVG is not currently supported as an option for images you add to your book, however. These images are likely more integral to the content of your book, so a reader using Look Inside or an older Kindle would likely be confused if they were absent.

You can, however, drag images in a number of different formats PNG, TIFF, and even many Photoshop files  into Vellum, and they will automatically be converted into a format usable by the platform. (For Kindle, this is typically JPEG.) Vellum will provide feedback about whether the image has enough resolution based on how large you want the image to be in the book, as seen here:


More details can be found on our help page for Inline Images

Ps. I would rather pay Amazon a little extra for file size than have a poor image  ;)

Agreed that high resolution images are best for high resolution devices, but I should note that, because Kindle charges you based on low-resolution versions of your images, they aren't always more expensive. You can read more about this on our blog entry discussing Three Myths about Amazon Delivery Costs and on our help page about File Size Considerations

Hope that's useful, and please let us know if you have other questions we can answer.

P.S. You mentioned Serif Drawplus, which I believe is Windows-only. As such, I should probably note that Vellum is only available for Mac.
Brad West. Co-founder of 180g, Creators of Vellum

Offline szaxe

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #79 on: June 09, 2015, 10:00:29 PM »


P.S. You mentioned Serif Drawplus, which I believe is Windows-only. As such, I should probably note that Vellum is only available for Mac.


Hi, thanks .... I have windows as my main platform, but I also have a mini-mac with Yosemite installed :)

Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #80 on: June 24, 2015, 05:41:37 PM »
Does anyone know a comparable program for paperback formatting?  I currently use scrivener, and it is not very user friendly.  Big learning curve.  Does work, but limited in how beautifully you can format your book.

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Offline Speaker-To-Animals

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #81 on: June 25, 2015, 11:10:06 AM »
I don't believe you can do anything similar with a print book, the variables are too great.

Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #82 on: June 25, 2015, 11:26:01 AM »
I'm sure it can be done.  The ebooks are more complicated than paperbacks, and Vellum did a fantastic job.  But I guess there isn't anything out there yet.  What a shame.

I don't believe you can do anything similar with a print book, the variables are too great.

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Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #83 on: June 25, 2015, 02:08:24 PM »
Just found these people who offer online formatting for paperbacks and ebooks.  Prices start at $10.

http://www.fastpencil.com/company/packages

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Offline AriadneW

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #84 on: June 25, 2015, 02:44:29 PM »
Software that did easy paperback formatting would be great. I set up a template for the size book I use in InDesign and just change the fonts and images.

My whole process is so much faster now I'm using Vellum for e-books, having something similar for paperbacks would be awesome.


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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #85 on: June 25, 2015, 02:47:28 PM »
The above might work.  I tried InDesign for a resume.  But it is only free for 30 days, then big bucks.  Also a learning curve.

Glad you found a way to get around it.

Software that did easy paperback formatting would be great. I set up a template for the size book I use in InDesign and just change the fonts and images.

My whole process is so much faster now I'm using Vellum for e-books, having something similar for paperbacks would be awesome.

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Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #86 on: June 25, 2015, 03:06:41 PM »
Playing around with Fastpencil.com.  They have a free membership as well.  You can choose from several formats, and choose the book trim (5x8, 6x9, etc.).  The output looks AMAZING.  Just found my paperback version of Vellum!

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #87 on: June 26, 2015, 11:08:33 AM »
Most book manufacturers (not printers, but manufacturers) can take a PDF of your book and use it for offset printing. You are no longer required to use specializedand expensiveprinting setup programs like QuarkXpress or Adobe InDesign to set up the printing layouts. If your writing program can set the internal and external margins, then you pretty much have all you really need to generate a printable PDF.

It's the internal margin that requires the most attention when generating a PDF to be used as the master for printing. It has to be set according to how many pages are in your book and the weight of the paper that will be used for print. The more pages and/or the thicker the paper, the thicker your book will be and thus the larger the internal margins must be.

Your book manufacturer can let you know what you need to set when you have worked out how many pages your final setup will require. They can also advise you on the best choices and practices you need to follow to create the best product for your customers.

Apple's Pages 4 does allow the writer to fine control the inner and outer margins. Much to my frustration, Pages 5 does not. I believe Word can set inner and outer margins.
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Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #88 on: June 26, 2015, 11:15:29 AM »
Margins are not the issue in my case.  I was looking for a way to "beautify" my output like vellum.  Something automatic and easy, with templates to choose from.  Fastpencil does that.  My only issue with them is they add their information on the copyright page.  I also need to find out if you can skip adding the book cover and still create the paperback.  I've contacted them to see how to do that.  But otherwise, I'll be using them to create my paperback interior. 

Most book manufacturers (not printers, but manufacturers) can take a PDF of your book and use it for offset printing. You are no longer required to use specialized--and expensive--printing setup programs like QuarkXpress or Adobe InDesign to set up the printing layouts. If your writing program can set the internal and external margins, then you pretty much have all you really need to generate a printable PDF.

It's the internal margin that requires the most attention when generating a PDF to be used as the master for printing. It has to be set according to how many pages are in your book and the weight of the paper that will be used for print. The more pages and/or the thicker the paper, the thicker your book will be and thus the larger the internal margins must be.

Your book manufacturer can let you know what you need to set when you have worked out how many pages your final setup will require. They can also advise you on the best choices and practices you need to follow to create the best product for your customers.

Apple's Pages 4 does allow the writer to fine control the inner and outer margins. Much to my frustration, Pages 5 does not. I believe Word can set inner and outer margins.

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Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #89 on: June 26, 2015, 08:24:13 PM »
FYI: Not sure www.FastPencil.com is the answer.  They may force you to publish with them.  Also, they ignore emails and support tickets. 

Anyone know a paperback interior designer/template service that is online or software?

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #90 on: June 29, 2015, 11:52:22 PM »
Just purchased as I liked the way the images can be manipulated within the s-ware program.  BUT, what you see within the program is the opposite of what is compiled.  Right now it is a mess.  The images pop onto other pages, the first letter of the paragraph which is enlarged and decorated, lands on another page, away from the first paragraph.

Frustrated as my book releases July 2 and I have unusable files.  Anyone with advice or suggestions for handling images in vellum?  I have also emailed them regarding the issue.

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Offline Brad West

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #91 on: June 30, 2015, 01:37:19 PM »
Anyone with advice or suggestions for handling images in vellum?  I have also emailed them regarding the issue.

For those following along, Patrice encountered a scenario where the combination of a drop cap and a floating image too large to fit on a page produced some surprising effects. Unfortunately, the effects only manifested in situations when the page size was relatively short (e.g. using iBooks for OS X) and werent visible from within Vellums Preview (which typically displays an iPad in portrait orientation).

Were investigating better ways to handle this situation in a future version of Vellum, but in the meantime advised Patrice to reduce the size of these floating images and to not use drop caps in these chapters.
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Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #92 on: June 30, 2015, 05:05:23 PM »


This option did indeed work.

Note: If you plan on using vellum files to upload to Draft2Digital and Google Play, use the NOOK-compiled epub for better results. 

For those following along, Patrice encountered a scenario where the combination of a drop cap and a floating image too large to fit on a page produced some surprising effects. Unfortunately, the effects only manifested in situations when the page size was relatively short (e.g. using iBooks for OS X) and weren't visible from within Vellum's Preview (which typically displays an iPad in portrait orientation).

We're investigating better ways to handle this situation in a future version of Vellum, but in the meantime advised Patrice to reduce the size of these floating images and to not use drop caps in these chapters.


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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #93 on: July 30, 2015, 11:37:04 AM »
Can you comment with more information on what is going with Vellum and KENPC? I updated Vellum, re-generated the Kindle ebook, and uploaded the new version. That part was easy, but not sure if this is something that I need to keep a closer eye on?

Discussion about that here: http://www.kboards.com/index.php/topic,219509.0.html


Offline Brad West

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #94 on: July 30, 2015, 11:58:25 AM »
Can you comment with more information on what is going with Vellum and KENPC? I updated Vellum, re-generated the Kindle ebook, and uploaded the new version. That part was easy, but not sure if this is something that I need to keep a closer eye on?

Discussion about that here: http://www.kboards.com/index.php/topic,219509.0.html

Thanks for making sure we knew about it, Alan. We just posted a response in that thread: http://www.kboards.com/index.php/topic,219509.msg3065858.html#msg3065858
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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #95 on: July 30, 2015, 02:47:57 PM »
Thanks for making sure we knew about it, Alan. We just posted a response in that thread: http://www.kboards.com/index.php/topic,219509.msg3065858.html#msg3065858

Thanks, Brad! That was very helpful.

I hate tweaking CSS, formatting HTML, etc. so it's nice to just be able to update Vellum and re-generate the file to re-upload in mere minutes.

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #96 on: August 14, 2015, 04:44:40 PM »
Hi, just tested Kindle link on my new book I'm about to upload. Doesn't work. page does not load in Chrome or Safari. Get the error:

Warning: simplexml_load_file(https://freegeoip.net/xml/76.213.231.234): failed to open stream: Connection timed out in /home/oneeightyg/webapps/get/blink/index.php on line 24

Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /home/oneeightyg/webapps/get/blink/index.php:24) in /home/oneeightyg/webapps/get/blink/index.php on line 195

This is pretty serious if our store links no longer work.

Please advise.

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #97 on: August 14, 2015, 05:05:00 PM »
Hi Patrice,

When we construct links for Amazon, we use a service (freegeoip.net) to determine the reader's location. It looks like that service is a little slow right now, and the connection is timing out. We've seen this happen once or twice before, but it fixed itself fairly quickly. Would it be possible for you try again in a little bit?

If you are worried about such failures in the future, one way around this is to uncheck Detect local store in your Store Link Preferences. However, if you do that, then German users won’t be detected to the German Amazon store (for example), which we think is unfortunate.

We are currently investigating ways to isolate Vellum from these rare outages!

Thanks for your patience.
Brad
« Last Edit: December 01, 2016, 05:51:05 PM by Brad Andalman »
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Offline ChrisWard

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #98 on: August 14, 2015, 05:11:26 PM »
I was recommended Vellum by a couple of writer friends and have never looked back. Just love it. It's so user friendly.

Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #99 on: August 14, 2015, 05:27:06 PM »
Will try again. Yes, unfortunate if a buyer clicks and can't buy or leave a review... even if it is rare. Hope there is an easy workaround for you.

Thanks.

Hi Patrice,

When we construct links for Amazon, we use a service (freegeoip.net) to determine the reader's location. It looks like that service is a little slow right now, and the connection is timing out. We've seen this happen once or twice before, but it fixed itself fairly quickly. Would it be possible for you try again in a little bit?

If you are worried about such failures in the future, one way around this is to uncheck Detect local store in your Store Link Preferences. However, if you do that, then German users won't be detected to the German Amazon store (for example), which we think is unfortunate.

We are currently investigating ways to isolate Vellum from these rare outages!

Thanks for your patience.
Brad


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